The Search for WondLa (Search for WondLa Series #1)by Tony DiTerlizzi
Now in paperback, Tony DiTerlizzi’s New York Times bestselling, richly illustrated modern classic.
When a marauder destroys the underground sanctuary that Eva Nine was raised in by the robot Muthr, the twelve-year-year-old girl is forced to flee aboveground. Eva Nine is searching for anyone else like her: She knows that other humans exist/b>/i>
Now in paperback, Tony DiTerlizzi’s New York Times bestselling, richly illustrated modern classic.
When a marauder destroys the underground sanctuary that Eva Nine was raised in by the robot Muthr, the twelve-year-year-old girl is forced to flee aboveground. Eva Nine is searching for anyone else like her: She knows that other humans exist because of an item she treasures—a scrap of cardboard on which is depicted a young girl, an adult, and a robot, with the strange word, “WondLa.”
Breathtaking two-color illustrations throughout display another dimension of the tale, and readers with webcams can also view Augmented Reality that reveals additional information about Eva Nine’s world. Tony DiTerlizzi honors traditional children’s literature in this totally original space-age adventure—one that is as complex as an alien planet, but as simple as a child’s wish for a place to belong.
* "The abundant illustrations, drawn in a flat, two-tone style, are lush and enhance readers’ understanding of this unique universe...DiTerlizzi is pushing the envelope in his latest work, nearly creating a new format that combines a traditional novel with a graphic novel and with the interactivity of the computer. Yet, beneath this impressive package lies a theme readers will easily relate to: the need to belong, to connect, to figure out one’s place in the world. The novel’s ending is a stunning shocker that will leave kids frantically awaiting the next installment.”School Library Journal, starred review
"There is...wonder aplenty in this tense, chase-filled journey to engage young readers, plus twists for adult fans of Twilight Zone–styled stories. The bond between Eva and her friends is well drawn, and Otto, happily, is more than just a human in alien form. DiTerlizzi's evocative, detailed pen illustrations, which have a retro Star Wars vibe, and interactive maps online, unlocked via Augmented Reality, contribute to a sense of adventure as Eva dives into the unknown."Publisher's Weekly
"Imaginative, accessible technologies combine with fanciful creatures to create perpetual wonder in this fast-moving narrative."BCCB
"Reminiscent of Arthur C. Clarke."New York Times Book Review
- Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
- Publication date:
- Search for WondLa Series, #1
- Edition description:
- Sales rank:
- Product dimensions:
- 5.56(w) x 8.04(h) x 1.48(d)
- 760L (what's this?)
- Age Range:
- 10 - 14 Years
Read an Excerpt
CHAPTER 1: ALONE
Eva Nine was dying. The tiny scarlet dots on her hand mirrored the glowering eyes of the snake that had just bitten her.
Sitting down on the prickly ground of dead brown pine needles and small cones, she felt the curdled coil of nausea wind its way up her throat from her stomach.
She dropped the sweaty handful of moss that she had scooped up from the forest floor.
“Kindling,” her Omnipod had instructed her earlier in its chirpy voice. “Find a flammable substance such as dry twigs or moss to begin your fire.” The large gathering of boulders Eva had found had seemed like the perfect place to make a shelter for the night, and the surrounding area was blanketed in ashen puff-patches of reindeer moss. As she had knelt down to gather a clump, Eva had realized there was a rust-colored, mottled snake just next to her, sunning itself in the fading light. She’d realized too late, though, to avoid its bite.
Now, with trembling hands, she fumbled through her dingy satchel to retrieve her Omnipod. The handheld metallic device was flat, like a magnifying glass, with a small circular hole in the middle of it that resembled an eye. Eva’s heart pounded, as if trying to escape her chest. She swallowed, interrupting the hectic meter of her breathing. The shoulder patch on her tunic blinked off and on in warning.
“This is Eva Nine,” she whispered into the Omnipod. “Initiate I-M … um, I-M …”
Eva closed her eyes and concentrated. She put the device to her forehead, as if the Omnipod would whisper to her brain the command she needed.
“Greetings, Eva Nine. How can I be of service?” the device chirped.
“I … um …” Her hands shook. “I need you to initiate Independent Medical—”
“Do you mean Individual Medical Assistance? IMA for short?” the Omnipod corrected her.
“Yes,” she answered, licking her dry lips and trying to hold her insides in.
“Is this an emergency?”
“Yes! I need help right away!” Eva yelled at the Omnipod.
“What is the nature of your emergency?”
“S-snake bite,” Eva said with a gulp. The nausea lurked just under her tongue, ready to leap out.
“Hold, please. Initiating Identicapture.” Eva watched as three tiny lights on the Omnipod flickered in a rhythm around its central eye. “Begin Identicapture of said snake. We need to determine if it is a poisonous species or not.”
Through glassy eyes Eva scanned her immediate area; she could no longer focus on the terrain around her, let alone find a snake disguised as the forest floor. Her eyes rolled up into her head. Her breathing slowed. She let the Omnipod slip from her fingers.
Eva fell back, like a slain giant collapsing in a miniature forest of moss. She looked up at the fading light of the cobalt blue sky. Her Omnipod lay alongside her as it repeated, “Please begin Identicapture.”
All Eva could whisper was, “Dead. I’m totally dead.”
A voice from the heavens echoed through the landscape. It was a kind and graceful voice, like the sort she’d heard coming from a beautiful woman in an old movie.
“Eva. Eva, dear, please get up,” the voice said. Just like in an old moving picture, Eva could also hear the slightest bit of static hidden in the dulcet intonation.
The pine trees seemed to whisper the girl’s name as the cool of evening blew in. Somewhere in the distance a whip-poor-will beckoned the night. Eva cracked open her pale green eyes into little slits.
“Eva Nine,” urged the voice, “get up.”
The girl rolled onto her side. Lying on the forest floor, she examined the tuft of moss in her hand. She saw that the delicate network of stalks really did make it look like a shrunken tree, albeit a washed-out lifeless one. How does such an insignificant plant survive in a big world? she wondered. What is its purpose? What is my purpose?
“I’m dead,” Eva announced to the sky. “Or couldn’t you tell? I’m gone. Deceased. No more. Deeeaaaaad!”
She turned her attention back to the little moss tree and pouted. “It’s not like you have to worry about that,” she muttered.
The clump of moss in her hands vanished, dissipating into a cloud of light motes. Eva curled up into a ball, shutting her eyes as the world around her also evaporated into nothingness. Emptiness.
The voice was right next to her now. “Eva, what happened?”
“Leave me alone,” the ball replied.
“You were not paying attention,” the voice said with a sigh. “You had a ninety-eight percent chance of discovering the snake, had you done a simple LifeScan sweep. It was right there in plain view.”
Still curled in a ball, Eva said nothing.
“Of course, I have to mark you as a failure on this particular survival skill test. We shall try it again tomorrow. All right?” said the voice.
A warm hand brushed Eva’s half-braided dirty-blond hair. At last Eva stood up.
Two dark orbs, emitting an amber glow from deep within, reflected Eva’s own face in a distorted fashion, like a fish in a fishbowl. Large automated eyelids clicked open and closed in a lifelike manner. Several other eyes, small and unblinking, studied the girl, recording endless data and sending it to a computerized brain. A brain that was contained in two metallic canisters mounted on the back of a head—the front of which displayed a mechanized silicone-rubber face.
“What is going on with you, Eva?” the automated lips mimed. “This test should have been effortless for you to pass. Is everything all right?”
One of the robot’s telescoping arms extended from a carousel of several additional arms folded up around the cylindrical torso. Four wiry fingers, also tipped in silicone rubber, rubbed Eva’s shoulders in a reassuring fashion.
“How is your concentration?” the robot asked. “I noted that you did not rest a full ten hours last night, which indicates that you may not have achieved enough REM sleep. That can have quite an effect on your performance.”
“Not now, Muthr.” Eva shrugged the robot off. “I need to be alone.”
She crossed the wide squarish white room and headed for the low doorway. Buff-colored rubbery floor tiles absorbed the sound of her plodding footsteps. Though the chamber was only dimly lit, there was still enough light coming from the holo-projectors mounted around the ceiling to show that the room itself was empty of anything … except for the human girl and the pale blue robot.
Eva sulked as she shuffled into the main hub of her living quarters. When the large doors to the holography chamber slid shut behind her, a pastoral scene was projected onto them in vivid detail. Cottony clouds drifted aimlessly across a brilliant azure sky over distant lavender mountains. This gave the effect that the entire hub was like a grand outdoor gazebo, displaying a magnificent vista in the round—though one projection was not working properly and flickered into a corresponding nighttime scene, ruining the illusion.
“Welcome back, Eva Nine.” The intercom spoke in a relaxed tone. Its words reverberated throughout the octagonal chamber. “How may I help you?” Water trickled in a distant stream, and songbirds sang, filling the vestibule with ambient sounds coinciding with the scenery.
“Hi. Please open bedroom doors, Sanctuary,” Eva said, stomping across the hub toward the far window. Projected on it was a spectacular view of a misty waterfall cascading down from a colossal mountaintop. The cast image crackled when the girl passed through it, as through a holographic curtain, into the open doors of her dimly lit bedroom.
“Close doors, please.” Eva flung her jackvest onto her medi-seat. She sat down on the edge of her foam bed and kicked off her sneakboots. As she flopped back onto the oval mattress, Eva stared up at the myriad of pipes and exhaust shafts that wound through her white ceiling. There were water stains on the corner ceiling tiles of the small room, like large ochre flowers blooming from the pipes. One of the overhead lights flickered in an annoying, erratic tempo.
With her hands behind her head, Eva rubbed the raised round mole on the nape of her neck. The warmth of her electric bed permeated through her tunic in a comfy sort of way. Her eyelids drooped, and she had begun to doze off when her bedroom doors slid back open.
“Eva, you forgot your equipment satchel and Omnipod back in the holo-chamber,” Muthr said, rolling into her room balanced on a single tread-worn wheel. “Honestly, dear, how can you expect to pass your training if you do not take care of your things?”
“Muthr!” Eva continued staring up at the stained ceiling, refusing to look Muthr in the eye. “Just leave it. I’ll put it away later.”
The robot picked Eva’s dingy jackvest up from the chair. The discarded garment had been perfectly hidden among the stuffed toys, dirty clothes, and electra-papers that were strewn about the room. “Put it away as you have done with the rest of your belongings? I sometimes wonder—”
“Please, Muthr, I just want to be alone for a while,” Eva barked at the ceiling.
Muthr hung the jackvest on the empty row of coat hooks lining the wall. “Dinner is at eighteen hundred hours. Please be timely, Eva,” Muthr said. After Muthr rolled out of the room, the doors slid shut behind her. Eva reached under her head and grabbed her pillow. As she squeezed it over her face, she screamed.
© 2010 TONY DITERLIZZI
Meet the Author
Tony DiTerlizzi is the co-creator of the New York Times bestselling series The Spiderwick Chronicles. He also illustrated the Caldecott Honor Book The Spider and the Fly and wrote and illlustrated Kenny & the Dragon. He lives with his family in Western Massachusetts. Visit him at DiTerlizzi.com.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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WOW, I don't even know where to begin. This book was AMAZING and I'm glad to hear it might be made into a movie. The author is so detailed in this "new" world you feel like you're part of it. Although this is considered a teen fiction I think everyone will love it. The book has so many emotions, you'll feel intense as Eva Nine and her friends try to escape Besteel. You will get sad when something happens to Muthr. You'll feel joy & love many times through out the book while Eva Nine meets some new friends and they help each other in more ways then one. And at the end of the book you'll have an "AH HA" moment when you will see a parallel between this book and another. Sorry I'm being so veg on the book. It truly is an amazing book and I don't want to give too much away. This is one book your won't be disappointed in. I'm happy to know that their will be more books for us to join in and follow Eva Nine and her friends with. I also want to note a cool feature with this book and with the online website. With the book, internet connection and a webcam you can get "WondLa Vision" also known as "Augmented Reality". There are keys in the book that you point to the webcam and you are taken on a interactive trip through a map of planet "Orbona". It took me a bit to figure out how to get it to work but once I did, it made the book come even more to life. ------------------------------- * Disclaimer / Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from Simon & Schuster Canada to facilitate my review. This post reflects my honest, personal opinion which may differ from yours. No monetary compensation was provided for this post.
choc full of adventure with unexpected twists and turns and a really awsome ending
I love this book sssssssssoooooooo much. I read it under a night even though its only 4oo something pages i kept telling my self that i would go to sleep once i finished a chapter but i couldnt stop reading this amazing action pack suspenceful story of a 12 year girl and her robot mm and other friends I <3 this story
I'm 24 years old. and I would happily rrecomend this wonderfully illustrated and inccredibly well laid out story to anyone who can read! The story takes you right along with the party as they travel and you cannot help but feel the emotions throughout each adventure! This isn't a book, but a way to transport yourself right along with Eva Nine, Muthr and Rovender as the traverse the planet Orbanna! You will be sourprised!
Really good,amazing descriptions, makes you feel like your actually there. I would recommend this to anyone with a taste of advenutre
Extremly good and a must read.
This book will keep you entertained. It is an excellent read with beautiful art work that it's worth to get the hardcopy to add to your library at home. If you're interested in sci fi books and wether you're a young reader or an adult, this book will keep you up for hours...such a page turner in which I highly recommend. =) I can't wait for the sequel! yay
This book is a great adventure for your imagination a great follow up of the spiderwick chronicals also writen by tony diterilizy
I was skeptical at first- robot mothers and a human child lost in an alien world. The story grabbed ahold of me and didn't let go. Tony DiTerlizzi's story is of Eva Nine, a little girl desparate to see the AboveGround and find others like herself. Eva's journey begins with disaster when she must escape the only home she has ever known and make her way AboveGround all the while one step ahead of the Besteel. Along the way she does make some friends (think Dorothy , the scarecrow, the lion and the tin man) a cuddly dinosaur-like waterbear and Rovender Kitt(who reminds me alot of JaJa Banks in Star Wars). His illustrations are marvelous and the characters will grow on you. This is a classic story revamped and improved. I have not been able to take advantage of his use of augmented reality video clips but they will appeal to the kids. Can't wait for the next installment.
I read both books and i cant wait for the third! I read the hunger games and it was good but this book is ten times better. The journey you go on with Eva is one you never want to end! Anyone who loves the hunger games should deffinetly read this. No matter who you are you will love this book. A must read!
You have toooooo read this
I've never picked up a Tony DiTerlizzi book before, though I watched The Spiderwick Chronicles movie when it came out. I think I'm definitely going to have to pick up that series after reading The Search for Wondla. WondLa is about Eva Nine, a twelve-year-old girl raised by her robot, Muthr, in an underground facility called a Sanctuary. Eva longs for nothing but seeing the surface, and has her dreams thrust upon her one evening when a dangerous huntsman destroys her home. She finds the world strange and dangerous, and unlike anything she has been trained for. I really genuinely enjoyed this book, and it surprised me, as I usually don't read anything from the "juvenile" section. However, I love seeing a good sci-fi novel out there for kids, and I was impressed at how the book didn't "talk down" to it's audience, like a lot of juvenile fiction I've encountered. It also tackles some very adult themes, such as death, slaughter of innocents, and guilt. The pull for this book from the beginning for me was, though, the absolutely stunning artwork! I'm a sucked for books with illustrations, and WondLa definitely did not disappoint in that area. The two-tonal art plates pop up at the beginning of every chapter, with a few smaller ones scattered throughout - some of which are important for things outside the book. The characters were all extremely likable. Eva Nine was a bit of a brat, but a believable one. Mr. DiTerlizzi definitely got the personality of a twelve-year-old girl down to a t. Muthr is a strong presence, though she isn't in the forefront of the story the entire time. Rovender Kitt is the strong, adult personality needed to keep Eva on her path, and Otto the giant water bear is just too cute for words. My only cons for the book was a slow start (though that was just me personally), and one "squick"-worthy scene involving the huntsman, but again, that's just my own personal taste. The cliffhanger ending was absolutely perfect, and has me hungry for more. Fortunately, this is a trilogy, and I cannot wait for the next one to come out! I'm thinking this may even be one I'll buy for myself. (originally posted @ The Tealeaf Review)
This book is absolutely amazing. I have the actual book and I love it! Even though its super long with atleast 5 parts to it, it is definently worth the read. I strongly reccomend this book! =D
I've been on a big young adult fiction kick lately, and I really enjoyed this book. The illustrations (which are amazing and wonderful) are what drew me in, and I bought the book purely for them. This book was a quick read, but I found it to be very engaging. There could have been more in the character development/backstory area, but I wasn't confused and I didn't feel gypped, just curious. I felt that the adventure moved at a very good pace, and I thought the world was easy to picture. The ending is a huge cliffhanger however, which annoys me, because rather than leave me thinking "Yes, there's more coming", I thought "WHAT? That's the end!?" I hate waiting for other books in the series when the one before ends on a part of the plot that should really be continued. Overally, I really enjoyed this book and the futuristic theme mixed with new breeds of animals that centered around evolutions of familiar underwater life.
I 100 percent recommend this book to people who like/ love to read adventure books. There is parts, when at times you may get teary eyed. I know I did! But, I Loved/ am still loving thiis book. ( And plus you can totally tell because I have it 5 stars !) So, what im trying to say is: Read this book! You'll love it as much as I do/ did.
Every one out there that says this book is boring. Okay where xo i begain. THIS BOOK IS AWSOME. You guys are JERKS. IT'S FUNNY HAS ACTION NOT TO VIOLENT WHAT MORE COULD YOU WANT! If it dosen't make sense READ IT AGAIN. Thank you for your time.
A great read for all.
I loved every single part of this book. It was amazingly strange but intresting
I loved both books
Got this book when i won a award at school and it looked really weird but now that i've read some reviews and figured out mostley what it's about i'm super excited!!!! And so far i've only seen 1 bad review from someone who thought there was too MUCH detail! Like thats possible!
This book is awesome! GET IT OR YOU'LL REGRET IT!
I love it Ioved it Ioved it
First off, I just want to say that Tony DiTerlizzi is a fantastic illustrator with a wonderful imagination. His pictures are absolutely fantastic and beautiful. The creatures he's created are so creative, it's a shame that the story doesn't match. I feel the actual plot (and the ending) is a little bit contrived. It's also pretty predictable as well as very, VERY cliched in some parts. The character arc of Rovee was like any other grumpy character who is "forced" to help the heroine and ends up buddy-buddy at the end. The dialogue also came off as being very awkward, especially with Eva's thoughts. They didn't sound like they could be spoken out loud at all. I understand DiTerlizzi wanted his story to have a more "faerie tale" kind of feeling, but it's all a little too formal to me. More than that, many of the events in the novel just seemed to 'happen' without any real purpose. The characters just went from being in one scenario to the next, one problem to another. It became a little bit redundant after a while. However, the book did have its good points, and during the middle, when Eva Nine was on Solas, the world-building drew me into the story. Overall, this was an okay book, not bad but not particularly engrossing either.
Wrirtten well and a very interesting plot :)